When you can’t use the property the way that you would like for your business, it may be because it is in the wrong zone. A simple example is if the area is zoned for residential use and you are trying to create a commercial business. It can be much more complex than this, but, either way, you may need to ask for a variance.
A variance allows you to use the land in the way that you’d like without actually changing the zone that it’s in. You have to get it cleared with the local governments in order for this to be legal, and you cannot simply start using the building without getting the variance. But is it just the government that has a say? Do the other people who live in the area also get to voice their opinion?
Local landowners will be notified
Generally speaking, when you want a variance, you have to go before the zoning board. When they get your application, they will set up a hearing. This hearing is where you get to pitch the reason for the variance and convince them that it should be allowed.
One step that they will take when they see your application is to notify the other people who live in the area about your request for a variance. These local property owners do not have to come to the hearing, but they do have the option to do so if they would like. If they have an opinion on the matter, they may be given time to speak and voice this opinion. They may either support your proposal or say that it shouldn’t be allowed.
As you can see, simply starting a business may be more complicated than you assumed if the zone doesn’t allow the type of business you would like to create. Be sure you know exactly what steps to take to try to resolve such a complex situation.